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Oceansides’ SoCal Legacy Wins West Coast Championship

Team Heading to Virginia for Nationals

Team needs community support
Photos courtesy of Steve Citron

Oceanside CA— SoCal Legacy notched its 16th title win at The Beach Soccer Championships, the largest beach soccer tournament on the West Coast, which is hosted in Oceanside, California each year in May.  “This is the final stepping stone,” said Coach Steve Citron, “on our journey to the North American Sand Soccer Championships (NASSC), the largest, most competitive beach soccer tournament in the world.”

Israel Ramirez cracks a shot in preliminary round action.

The team went undefeated, scoring 30 goals in 4 preliminary matches and then found the net 10 more times in the championship match to decisively defeat Barelona Cantera 10 – 4.  Legacy’s combined overall average for the contest was 8 goals per game.  The tournament came just a few days after the team was recognized by the Mayor and City Council of Oceanside for their victory last December at the BU16 Major Beach Soccer National Championships, held in Clearwater Beach, Florida each year.

The five victories moved SoCal Legacy’s record to 78-9-3, equating to an 87% match win ratio. The 40 goal weekend brings their scoring total to 578 goals since inception in 2013.

SoCal Legacy has unveiled a few extraordinary players that have recently joined the team over the past few months to fill some gaps in its roster in preparation for the NASSC.  One such member is Gonzalo Marquez, the starting goalkeeper for Legacy’s younger brother team, Barcelona, replacing Jimmy Cruz, the team’s longstanding keeper who aged out of Legacy’s age division for this season, but hopes to return to the team in 2018.  “Gonzalo has some big shoes to fill but has performed exceptionally well during the first three tournaments of this year,” said Coach Citron, “highlights include some excellent saves including shutting down a penalty kick at Oceanside.”

Gonzalo Marquez makes a beautiful diving save to shut down a penalty kick in preliminary round action

Justin Ricketts, the leading goal scorer and 2016/17 season MVP for his competitive grass soccer team, joined the Legacy franchise earlier this year, and is also heading to Virginia Beach in June.  “Justin brings a lot of talent and positive energy to the team,” said Coach Citron, “he had a spectacular debut with the team in Port Hueneme in April, scoring a tremendous amount of goals to secure that championship and played both exceptional defense and offense in The Beach Soccer Championships, proving to be an incredible asset to the team.”

Justin Ricketts launches one of many power shots on frame in preliminary round action against GoBeach Soccer. Justin found the net several times throughout the contest.

Last but not least, and scoring one of the more impressive mid-air volleys at The Beach Soccer Championships, Antonio Chavez joined Legacy just prior to the event. Hailing from the highest Elite BU16 division of Carlsbad’s LA Galaxy Soccer Club, “Tone” brings a lot of height and dangerous goal scoring capabilities to Legacy’s front line.  He scored several key goals to help the team crush it in the Oceanside tournament.  “Antonio’s performance was fantastic and we have yet to see his full impact and potential because he is coming off a two-year beach soccer hiatus, so what we saw in this past tournament is only the beginning of things to come,” said Coach Citron.

Antonio “Tone” Chavez brings the ball down field. Tone scored several key goals during the contest.

Virginia Beach Bound but in need of some help

The team is very close to its fundraising goal, but is still working hard in the eleventh hour to make it to Virginia Beach to represent the City of Oceanside, San Diego County, and the State of California.  “When All-Pro Tactical, the leading sponsor of the NASSC, heard that SoCal Legacy was attempting to travel to Virginia to compete in the event, and that we were struggling a bit for funding, they called and offered to cover our tournament entry fees and to provide uniforms to help the team with these expenses”, said Coach Citron, “without their assistance it would have been very difficult to participate in this competition, they have been phenomenal to work with.”

SoCal Legacy needs to shore up a $1,000 – $1,500 shortfall in their fundraising efforts and has a GoFundMe campaign set up for the entire team and some of the individual players. “We are so close,” says Coach Citron, “we just need a few more donations from our community to help us get across the finish line.  These hard working young men deserve a chance to represent their community at the biggest beach tournament in the world.”

Information on how you can support the team is listed below:

SoCal Legacy is part of a non-profit 501 (c)(3) youth beach soccer club, so tax deductible donations (check or money order, made out to “SoCal Legacy BFC”) can be sent to:

SoCal Legacy BFC
c/o Steve Citron
PO Box 4186
Oceanside, CA. 92052-4186

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